How to Start a Bush From a Cut Rose


Many rose gardeners enjoy the challenge of growing new rose bushes from cut roses. This method of rose propagation is an effective and frugal way to increase the number of rose bushes you have. Growing new rose bushes from stem cuttings is a simple and straightforward process that any gardener can learn and master. The result will be a garden filled with many of your favorite rose bushes.

Step 1

Clip stems from your growing rose bushes in the late spring. Cut at least three 8-inch stems from hybrid tea rose bushes, at least three 5-inch stems from floribunda rose bushes or at least three 3-inch stems from miniature rose bushes. Select sturdy canes that have at least four leaves and have just finished blooming. Cut the top of the cuttings at a 45-degree angle just above the highest leaf axil (the point where a leaf attaches to the cane). Cut the bottom of the cuttings at a 45-degree angle at the point where the cane intersects with a side branch. Leave this intersection at the bottom of the cane.

Step 2

Fill the bucket with cool water and place the cut stems into the water immediately.

Step 3

Fill the peat pots to the top with potting soil. Submerge the peat pot in water to the rim to moisten the potting soil. Place the filled peat pots onto the tray.

Step 4

Remove every leaf from the cut stems except the top two leaves. Leave any buds on the stems intact. Remove thorns, if desired, by popping them off with your thumb. Use the sharp knife to remove about 1 inch of the outer covering from the bottom of each stem. Do this on two sides of the stem.

Step 5

Dip the bottom 2 inches of each stem cutting into the rooting hormone and shake the stem to remove excess powder. Insert each stem cutting immediately into a prepared peat pot, pushing it in 2 inches.

Step 6

Construct a mini-greenhouse for each pot. Use the metal skewer to poke four holes in the bottom of the plastic drinking cup. Poke four holes along the top of each plastic drinking cup, spacing them an even distance apart. Place a peat pot into each plastic cup. Cut two 8-inch pieces of wire. Attach one end of one wire piece to one of the upper holes in the plastic cup. Stretch the wire piece over to the hole immediately across the cup opening and attach the other end of the wire to this hole. Repeat with the second piece of wire and the two remaining holes.

Step 7

Place each plastic cup and peat pot into a plastic bag and seal the bag. Set each rose cutting in a warm location that receives bright, indirect light. Provide regular watering to keep the soil moist.

Step 8

Watch for new growth on the stem cuttings to indicate that roots are forming. This will take between two weeks and six months to occur.

Step 9

Remove the peat pot from the mini-greenhouse when you see active new growth. Plant each peat pot in a larger container, completely burying the entire peat pot beneath the soil. Add 1 tsp. granular fertilizer to the top of the soil and water the soil well.

Step 10

Harden-off the rose plants over the next two weeks. Place the containers outside in the sun for longer periods each day until the rose plants are accustomed to six hours of direct sunlight each day.

Step 11

Transplant the rose plants in the autumn and add a thick layer of mulch around the new plants.

Things You'll Need

  • Gardening gloves
  • Pruning shears
  • Bucket
  • Water
  • Peat pots (4-inch diameter)
  • Potting soil
  • Tray
  • Rooting hormone
  • Large plastic drinking cups
  • Metal skewer
  • 20-gauge wire
  • Wire cutters
  • Gallon size plastic bags (sealing with zippers)
  • Larger planting containers
  • All-purpose granular fertilizer
  • Shredded mulch (leaves or wood chips)


  • Rose Gardening Made Easy: Growing Roses from Cuttings
Keywords: rose gardeners, rose propagation, stem cuttings

About this Author

Kathryn Hatter is a 42-year-old veteran homeschool educator and regular contributer to Natural News. She is an avid gardener, seamstress, quilter, painter, cook, decorator, digital graphics creator and computer user. She is interested in natural health and hopes to direct her focus toward earning an RN degree.